OsuSala.Online: A Customer Portal to Enable OsuSala to Serve More Customers Safely, in Less Time at the Height of the COVID-19 Pandemic

An Urgent Solution for Widespread Problems Involving Prescription Management, Order Delivery Routing, and Customer Service.

From the very onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in Sri Lanka, in March 2020, the country’s already-established mobile food and grocery delivery landscape comprising service providers like PickMe and UberEats was able to cater to the public’s needs amid periods of curfew and lockdowns.  

However, the equally important essential need of medicine remained inaccessible for most, without proper systems and pre-existing soft infrastructure including digital communication and delivery means in place to get medicine across to patients and others in need to their homes.

Medicine remained stocked in pharmacies and other medical facilities, while patients and their families resorted to informal means with varying degrees of success in procuring the medicine they needed, with the country’s private and state pharmaceutical establishments unable to service them in the remote environment that transpired amid the lockdowns.

Beta Launch stepped in at the eleventh hour so to speak, in late-March 2020, approaching the State Pharmaceuticals Corporation (SPC) and their OsuSala outlets, to formulate a solution for this critical issue on a fully-voluntary basis to boost the speed/volume of medication delivered to Sri Lankans in need.  

We built an online prescription management system that helped OsuSala optimize staff use and improve medicine output; reduce staff/customer physical exposure to COVID-19; and improve client delivery and customer service experience.
Ideation across segments: mapping out potential segments and issues
Below we briefly explore the problem in more detail, the solution, and how Beta Launch helped OsuSala set numerous health industry app records as depicted above while receiving excellent feedback from users in both Colombo and Galle.
Ideation across segments: mapping out potential segments and issues

Outdated Client Delivery System:

Multiple Manual Touchpoints, Poor Response to Customer Inquiries, and Slow Ordering & Delivery Process.

OsuSala, while visionaries in Sri Lankan pharmaceutical retail and franchising, experienced difficulty in receiving and fulfilling medicine orders due to several fundamental issues in their existing system involving manual processes requiring human interaction across several external and internal touchpoints.
Key issues included:
  • Excessive manual + human/staff use and time receiving calls, validating orders, etc.
  • Manual handling of customer inquiries, responses, and customer experience
  • Inability to efficiently route orders to specific OsuSala outlets based on location
Issues on the customer-side such as a) inability to travel due to curfew/lockdowns b) fear/anxiety of physical interaction c) plus lack of updates and information, together with the key system/process issues discussed above, led to considerable challenges in OsuSala’s pharmaceutical operation.

Operational/business consequences of above situation:

  • Low sales productivity/medicine output at OsuSala retail outlets, unable to fulfill orders
  • Poor customer service response time, bad customer service experience, and thereby reputation damage
  • Excessively long delivery times and customers unable to receive medication on time
With these poor operational/business outcomes, OsuSala staff remained inefficiently utilized while regular customers as well as potential new customers (with little option amid travel restrictions) were dissatisfied with the service, and the brand stood to be potentially negatively impacted.

Osusale Online: An Industry-First Locally in Online Prescription Management and Medication Ordering

Considering that the majority of local private pharmacy brands/outlets still relied on manual processes at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Beta Launch’s voluntary-basis development of OsuSala Online — an online prescription management system/platform facilitating prescription uploads, prescription processing, and order management for SPC and OsuSala outlets — set a precedent in the local pharmaceutical industry and its evolution.

The platform set a number of online usage, social and engagement records within just 4 days of launching, reflecting how well it was received.
Ideation across segments: mapping out potential segments and issues
The system’s integration of a series of order validation, prescription management, notification and delivery routing features, allowed for operational efficiency across OsuSala outlets while enhancing prescription and medicine dispatching accuracy plus customer experience.

The OsuSala Online prescription management system included:

  • Simple prescription upload and location selection
  • Easy account registration and log-in for customers
  • Automated order validation
  • Online prescription management
  • Simple prescription views plus comments
  • Multiple prescription/order statuses for simpler tracking
  • Automated notifications/customer help desk
  • Online routing of orders/dispatch
Utilizing the automated system described above, customers could order medicine and receive it at their homes in just 3 easy steps:

1) Upload prescription
2) Live updates from pharmacist
3) Medicine delivered to customer.

The overall result was that OsuSala was able to offer an innovative, practical solution to improve its operation and boost medicine output, while customers could enjoy a simple, fully-transparent experience of ordering medicine online and receive superior customer service to ease anxiety at the height of the pandemic.
Ideation across segments: mapping out potential segments and issues